President Hage Geingob’s clean-up campaign scheduled for this Friday during Africa Day, has received great support from the corporate world.
Ohlthaver & List (O&L) Group, FNB Namibia, the German Embassy and others have all expressed their support to the initiative which will go a long a way in helping Windhoek to regain its status as the cleanest city in Africa.
The O&L Group donated 300 cases (7200 bottles) of water towards the national clean-up campaign to the Office of the Prime Minister, while Plastic Packaging sponsored more than 500 000 special refuse bags manufactured from recycled plastic.
The German Development Cooperation and the German Embassy announced in a statement on Thursday that they would contribute to the campaign’s successful implementation by organizing and mobilizing 300 farmers and farmer groups in Rundu, Okahao, Otamanzi Constituency, Okongo, Tsumkwe West and others, to actively take part in the event.
Through the Communal Land Development Project, they will provide necessary equipment such as gloves, masks and rubbish bags to collect and dispose waste and garbage so as to take on the issue of pollution in the Northern communal areas.
The campaign will be accompanied by awareness raising and information events addressing the importance of sustainably protecting natural resources and the environment.
“Improper disposal of waste, littering and other forms of pollution are not only hazardous to human health and well-being, but also negatively impact our environment and agriculture, endangering plants, soil and livestock,” the German embassy said.
Initially, Geingob had set May 1 (Workers Day) for the national clean-up campaign, but was forced to move the date following an outcry from various trade union and civil society representatives.
Recycle Namibia Forum (RNF) Coordinator, Anita Witt, said that the organisation and its members have stepped up in full support of the president's appeal to clean up Namibia on Friday.
“Although the RNF has continuously rendered its support to a number of clean up actions across Namibia during the past years, the size and scale of this year's nationwide clean up saw a considerable increase in both volumes as well as participation by the RNF members.
“Not only has the president's appeal seen the local authorities in all 14 regions prepare for the clean ups, but it has extended further to include the support of the private sector, with a number of smaller groups and individuals getting ready to join in on the action on Friday.
“The RNF has also furthermore supported the tourism sector's initiative to ‘pick up where you are’, which will see all role players cleaning up in and around their establishments and on the road.
“Tour guides will also be encouraged to sort the recyclables from the waste, and to deliver these to the closest collection point.
“We commend the president on this national call, and wish him and our fellow Namibians a very successful implantation of this brilliant activity,” Witt said.
Last week, the Office of the Prime Minister requested each government ministry, organisation and agency to contribute N$20,000 towards the national clean-up campaign.
It was not immediately clear how much had been raised through this initiative as Secretary to Cabinet, George Simaata refused comment.
FNB also announced on Wednesday that it was in support of President Geingob’s clean up initiative.
It said its staff members in Ongwediva and Grootfontein have already been hard at work cleaning their respective towns.
“They encourage all other branches to heed the call by President Hage Geingob. Let’s get our hands dirty to clean our country,” FNB said in a statement.
Mayor of Opuwo, Albert Tjiuma, was quoted in the media saying that the Opuwo Town Council is looking at enforcing a bi-monthly clean-up campaign in an effort to encourage cleanliness at the town.
“We are also looking at whether suburbs could, in future, compete against each other in cleaning competitions.
“This is to motivate residents to keep their environment and town clean. Cleanliness in Opuwo is not at the level we want it to be,” Tjiuma said.
The clean-up campaign has, however, received criticism from Affirmative Repositioning leader, Job Amupanda.
“According to the cleaning campaign program, millions forced from ministries to the FNB Account for the cleaning campaign will only see the elites spending two hours of actual cleaning while four hours will be speeches and slogans. It is doubtful if elites will actually enter the riverbeds, where the real cleaning need is, to pick up the sh*t of the suffering masses.
“..The cleaning campaign should be done by land owners, those that own pieces of land should clean! On whose land should I clean?,”Amupanda said.